Seven Zimbabweans living in South Africa have died after drinking toxic homemade alcohol.
Thirteen others have been hospitalised, of which five are in a critical condition, after they consumed the brew that was tainted with methanol.
The tragedy unfolded on Sunday, a day before the ban on liquor sales was lifted under lockdown Level 3 in the country.
The latest death was recorded on Wednesday.
The men, who lived Masiphumele in Fish Hoek, had attended a party where the brew was served on Sunday.
Senai Rungano, 33, who is eight months pregnant, lost her husband Tapera who also drank the booze.
“I thought he was his usual drunk self but when I tried to give him food, he had no appetite,” she says.
“On Monday morning I thought it was a hangover, he started vomiting and had hot flashes.”
The mother of two says she was angry and shouted at her husband to get ready for work, but he was restless and didn’t recognise her.
“I realised that he was not responsive and his mental situation was different. He did not know that I was his wife,” she says.
Tapera was rushed to False Bay Hospital where he died while waiting to be transferred to Groote Schuur hospital.
“I am heavily pregnant with two kids and I do not work. I am renting here, where will I get the money now that he is gone?” asks the devastated widow.
The supplier of the booze is nowhere to be found and his girlfriend Triza Jere, 26, says the bottles used for the home-made brew were marked “flammable acid”.
“I did not taste it nor smell it because I hate alcohol,” she said.
“They could not drink it without mixing it with Coke or juice.
“My boyfriend also drank it and I do not know whether he died or is sick in hospital.”
Natalie Watlington, the Health Communications Officer for Southern Western Sub-structures, confirmed: “Twenty cases of methanol poisoning were admitted to False Bay Hospital thus far of which seven patients have passed away. Five of the patients have been transferred either to Victoria or Groote Schuur Hospital.
“The cause of methanol poisoning was due to the consumption of alcohol tainted with methanol.”
People sometimes use methanol as a substitute for alcohol but this is dangerous and harmful to humans.
Methanol is used to create fuel, solvents and antifreeze.
Fraudster arrested after swipping for $390 000 groceries
A fraudster has been arrested after he swiped for groceries worth more than $398 000 at OK Supermarket in Hwange using a bank card that had been tampered with.
The man, Brian Pedzisa of Chitungwiza, was arrested on Thursday and is suspected to be among a gang of people who have been using cloned cards and other bank card related tactics to con various retail shops across the country.
Detectives on Thursday pounced on Pedzisa at the supermarket, moments after he was about to get out after swiping for groceries worth $396 384.
Matabeleland North provincial police spokesperson Inspector Glory Banda confirmed the incident and said police were now looking for two other people linked to the sca
“On 10 June 2021 a gang of three fraudsters tried to defraud OK Hwange Supermarket of groceries worth $396 384.
One of the fraudsters successfully used an electronic Visa card to make purchases but before he could make off he was arrested by a team of watchful detectives who were working on a tip-off. Upon being interviewed the suspect revealed that he was working with two other accomplices who are still at large,” said Insp Banda.
He said the gang had used the same strategy to defraud OK Mart Victoria Falls of an undisclosed amount in groceries. He appealed to members of the public to assist with information leading to their arrest.
“The two accomplices are on the run anyone with information that could lead to the arrest of these two criminals can report at the nearest police station,” said Insp Banda.
He called on shop owners to enhance security to avoid such incidents which were on the rise in the country.
“As police we would like to implore shop owners to enhance security at their premises through use of alarm systems and Closed Circuit Television. Retailers should examine electronic cards and do necessary verifications before processing of electronic transactions. For the record some fraudsters misrepresent themselves as humanitarian workers.”
According to sources privy to the incident, the gang would approach the supermarkets seeking a quotation for groceries pretending that the transaction wanted would be effected from a nostro account. Later one of the gang members would return to make purchases using a Visa card whose microchip would have been tampered with. Sunday News
BREAKING : Former Studio 263 actress Anne Nhira dies in SA
Former Studio 263 actress Anne Nhira who acted as Vimbai Jari in the soap has died.
She was 38 years old.
Her brother Juan Nhira confirmed the news.
“She sustained injuries on her chest area, rib cage and back during a robbery on Monday afternoon in Bedford view South Africa. She was only 38 years of age,” he said.
Juan said her funeral arrangements will be announced in due course. Rest in peace Anne.
Watch: Chivhu mother beheads her four children sets house on fire
Video footage has emerged after a Chivhu mother allegedly beheaded her four children before setting the family house on fire.
Police said on Twitter, “The woman then surrendered herself to the Police.”
National Police Spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said he was not in a position to give further details as the case was in it’s infancy.
“Our police officers are still attending the crime scene,” he said.
The incident occurred in Highview suburb in Chivhu which is about 146km from Harare.
The woman’s name and age could not be immediately established.
Meanwhile, videos of the multiple murder scene have surfaced online.
Watch the video below;